• Law School,  Legal Practice

    Summer Series: You Can’t Be What You Can’t See

    Summer Series 2019 continues! Today we have Karla Mardueno, a recent law grad from Howard law. She is studying for the Bar while completing a summer fellowship at MALDEF, and will begin working in Big Law once the Bar is over. That is a lot to balance, but she discusses who empowering it has been to begin her career surrounding by other powerful Lawtinas.    “Don’t work while you’re studying for the bar.” This is the advice I got over and over again in the months leading up to my law school graduation.  But when I learned that I could complete a fellowship during my bar summer, I could not…

  • Issues,  Law School,  Legal Practice

    Let Them Underestimate You: What Julian Castro Teaches Us About Expectations

    First, this is not an endorsement, but we have to talk about Julian Castro. He killed it at the debate stage on Wednesday and was a surprising star of the night. It seemed obvious that his performance was a surprise to everyone but Julian Castro. I noticed how cool, calm, collected he was after he delivered it. He acted like he did exactly what he had planned to do, even acknowledging that “a lot of people were surprised” by his breakout performance. That’s when it clicked. Julian Castro, I’m sure, has a life experience of being a Brown attorney who is dismissed as someone who is incapable of delivering and…

  • Law School,  Legal Practice

    Summer Series: Hustle Sold Separately–Securing a Summer Associate Gig

    Summer Series 2019 continues! Today we have Yadilsa Diaz, another repeat (and just as beloved) guest writer to this series. We have seen Yadilsa has been so kind to share her pre-law summer, her 1L summer as an in house counsel and now she shares her tips on how to hustle and get the big law summer associate position. Getting a foot into big law is no easy feat, and she shows you a road map on how to get it–of course, it take preparation, discipline, and faith–but she’s got it and so do you!     Hola hermanas! My name is Yadilsa Diaz, and I am a rising 3L at…

  • Law School,  Work Life Balance

    Summer Series: The Right Mindset to Conquer The Bar

    Summer Series 2019 continues! Today we have Karen Martinez, a repeat (and beloved) guest writer to this series. We have seen Karen conquer her 1L summer, master networking to nab a great second summer internship, and now she gives us a peek into her Bar Prep. She has the right mindset and animo that we should all hope to capture when studying for this beast of an exam!      One month into Bar prep has felt a lot more stressful than the last three years of law school. I have also realized that it is only more stressful because it is 3 years of law school condensed into 2…

  • Issues,  Law School

    What Law School is Not

    Recently someone interested in pursuing a more academic career asked me about the nature of law school and the ability to discuss ideas and social issues along with cases. It reminded me of my own experience when I first started law school and how incorrect I was when it came to the purpose and focus of law school. The summer before my 1L year I was really lucky to participate in a program for low income students to prep them for law school; like a mini-boot camp. I was stationed at Notre Dame and was bright eyed and ready to go on my first day. The program had three courses,…

  • Law School,  Legal Practice

    If Kim Kardashian Can Do It, So Can You? : Alternative Paths to Becoming a Lawyer

    By now most have heard about Kim Kardashian’s plan to become a lawyer without going to law school. There was some confusion because a lot of people don’t know of California’s apprenticeship exception that allows you to circumvent law school and instead learn the law in a non-traditional manner. People assumed she was “buying” her degree rather than doing it the “right” way. While I am not one to support or defend the Kardashian conglomerate, the path she’s pursuing is clearly an option that’s available to people. But the real question is, is this a realistic option that will result in a practical, useful, and successful career for those of…

  • Legal Practice

    Latina Leader: Karla Navarrete

    It’s time for another Latina Leader Lunes feature! Today we hear from California attorney, Karla Navarrete. A senior attorney at Coalition for Humane Rights, shares a bit of her work and what motivated her to become a lawyer. Spoiler: what I love most about her story is that she saw the need for more representation of Latinos in the law and then she went for it! And not only is she is excelling, she is leading a path for the next generation. 1.  When & why did you decide to go to law school? I decided to go to law school as a sophomore at UCLA. I was looking for…

  • Law School

    In Defense of a Gap Year

    First, it’s really brazen for me to decide to tell you it’s worth considering a gap year before you go to law school when I didn’t take one. But that best part of time and experience is that you can look back at your missteps and think of ways things could have gone better. I want to talk about taking a gap year (or two) between undergrad and law school because I think gifting yourself this time can be super valuable to your career. If you’ve read Becoming then you know Michelle went straight through from Princeton to Harvard without much assessment as to whether law school was right for…

  • Issues,  Work Life Balance

    American Like Me: A Book Review

    On one of my first days of school in the U.S. a young boy approached me and asked: What color are you? I had never been asked this before and remember showing him my arm, confused that this poor boy didn’t know his colors and answered:  I’m tan.  Later when I told my mom what happened, she laughed and said if someone asks you that again just say you’re Mexican. Easy enough. However, as I grew up, I realized the complexities of race in the U.S. I grappled with my own cultural identity and picking the right “label.” It’s all so complicated and made more so by the fact that…

  • Issues,  Law School,  Legal Practice

    Everyone Has Help: Why Kavanaugh’s Denials are a Detriment to our Profession

    I got into Yale Law School. That’s the number one law school in the country. I had no connections there. I got there by busting my tail in college. You’ve probably heard that re-play of Kavanaugh’s hearing in his attempt to become a Justice. There are so many things that were a sloppy mess in this hearing, but for me, this was such an eye-opening statement. This is a man that comes from wealth, working and living with DC-elite, is a legacy student (aka White Affirmative Action) and yet he sat there and screeched he did this all on his own. He ignores every leg-up, privilege, assistance given to him…